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A Word from Food Science and Technology


Joseph Marcy Joseph Marcy, department head, Food Science and Technology

The Department of Food Science and Technology will have one of the most unique food laboratories in the United States when it moves into the new Human and Agricultural Biosciences Building 1.

One of the components of the new building will be a biosecurity level 2 certified food processing facility, allowing our scientists to conduct experiments involving E. coli, Salmonella, and other pathogens that require a heightened level of security and training. By having this extremely advanced facility at our disposal, we will be able to examine how food becomes contaminated and find ways to help industries provide a healthy, reliable food source to the world.

This is only one example of how the new research building will enable our department to continue to be a leader in food science and technology and to help provide healthy, reliable sustenance to a growing global population.

We will also have a two-story pilot food processing plant that will resemble many of the commercial facilities around the country. In our new plant, students and researchers can work on issues surrounding pasteurization, fermentation, and packaging, as well as examine emulsion stability, pro-biotic culture viability, ingredient technology, and product and process development — among other things. The cutting-edge facility will allow us to continue our relationships with private industry and prepare our students for challenging and rewarding careers.

The new building will also house state-of-the art sensory panels, modern kitchen facilities, and conference rooms. While researchers in one laboratory study the emotional response to food, a scientist next door might be working on a way to improve the food we feed U.S. troops in combat.

The work in the new facility will help drive the state’s economy, too. Aquaculture researchers will continue to develop new ways for impoverished regions of Virginia to raise shrimp, tilapia, and striped bass as a food source while providing economic growth.

We look forward to showing you how our new research facilities will continue our department’s growth and success that impact not only the state, but also the world.


Joseph Marcy

Department Head, Food Science and Technology